6.8/10
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31 user 10 critic

American Heart (1992)

An ex-convict is tracked down by his estranged teenage son, and the pair try to build a relationship and life together in Seattle.

Director:

Martin Bell

Writers:

Peter Silverman (story), Martin Bell (story) | 2 more credits »
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1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Boylan John Boylan ... Janitor
Jeff Bridges ... Jack Kelson
Edward Furlong ... Nick Kelson
Greg Sevigny Greg Sevigny ... Young Jack
Jayne Entwistle ... Monique
Willie Williams Willie Williams ... The Gospel Fireballs
Roosevelt Franklin Roosevelt Franklin ... The Gospel Fireballs
Melvyn Hayward ... Normandy
Don Harvey ... Rainey
Kit McDonough ... Landlady
Wren Walker Wren Walker ... Lisa
Cristine McMurdo-Wallis ... School Administrator
Lucinda Jenney ... Charlotte
Charlotte London Charlotte London ... Flo
Loyd Catlett ... Vernon the Bartender
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Storyline

After leaving jail, Jack Kelson wants to live a normal life. He rents a small flat, moves in with his son Nick and tries to get a steady job. But then a former friend steps into his life again. Written by Markus Lasermann <mslaserm@trick.informatik.uni-stuttgart.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Jack's only hope was a dream... Nick's only hope was Jack. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexual situations | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 May 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

American Heart - Die zweite Chance See more »

Filming Locations:

Seattle, Washington, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,549, 9 May 1993, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$384,048
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Black and White (some footage)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The apartment building Jack Kelson and his son lived in was presented as Queen Anne Hill in the movie. In actuality, the movie was filmed in an apartment building on Capitol Hill in Seattle, on the 1700 block of Summit Avenue North See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the movie, the ferry is leaving Seattle (towards Bainbridge Island or Bremerton). However a few seconds later we see the boat wake with the Olympic Mountains in the distance indicating the boat is headed towards Seattle, not away from it. See more »

Quotes

Jack Kelson: [to Nick] You keep me straight, I keep you straight.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Big City Dick: Richard Peterson's First Movie (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Cocktails For Two
Composed by Arthur Johnston, Sam Coslow
Performed by Michael White
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A marvellous film that deserves a bigger audience
10 April 1999 | by wildirisSee all my reviews

I love Martin Bell's American Heart. It comes together like an organic whole, with nothing that seems false or out of place. The low-key, matter-of-factly gritty tone means that the film probably won't rollercoaster over you on first viewing, but also that, unlike some more high-impact films, it bears repeated viewings and even gains by them.

American Heart is high quality throughout, with fine writing, directing, acting, and artistic design. The characters are well drawn, not just types but real creations. The cast are wonderful across the board. Despite the fact that Heart was his first non-documentary feature, Bell seemed already to know how to get the best out of his actors (his later made-for-cable film Hidden in America also features fine performances). The score is very effective, too; Tom Waits' end-title song in particular. For anyone interested in Jeff Bridges or Edward Furlong this is probably essential viewing, but it is also well worth discovering for indie buffs or, indeed, anyone who likes good drama. Though the UK video sleeve may make it look like an all-action blockbuster, and the opening title sequence like a comedy, don't be put off: it's a gritty, poignant drama of real quality that deserves to be seen by more than the seemingly few who have already done so.


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